A healthier future; Israel at the UN; Solar powered fabric; and much more!
by: Michael Ordman
ISRAEL’S MEDICAL ACHIEVEMENTS
Five patients saved by new Covid-19 treatment
Israel’s Enlivex Therapeutics reported positive results in its clinical Covid-19 trial of its Allocetra treatment (reported here previously) Five seriously ill patients made complete recoveries, an average 8.5 days after receiving the treatment.at Jerusalem’s Hadassah hospital.
Israel’s largest Covid-19 treatment center
Haifa’s Rambam hospital has opened its fortified underground emergency hospital to accommodate the rise in Covid-19 patients in Northern Israel. Its 770 beds include 170 for patients on ventilators – sufficient for almost the total of Covid-19 patients currently hospitalized in Israel.
Monitoring pain in Covid-19 patients
Israel’s Medasense (see here) assesses levels of pain in non-communicative patients using its PMD200 pain monitoring device. The technology is now being advanced on ventilated COVID-19 patients. Medtronic is distributing the tech in Europe and FDA approval is in progress.
Israel & UAE join in fighting Covid
Medical professionals from Israel and the UAE attended the JLM-BioCity sponsored IGTCloud Online Conference, “How Big Data & AI Can Fight the COVID-19 Crisis”. UAE and Israeli medical experts then presented sessions in a webinar on the UAE Healthcare sector.
First joint Israeli-UAE tech product
Israel’s SURE Universal and UAE’s Hamad Bin Khalifa (HBK) have launched HBKiCare – the first joint UAE-Israeli tech product. The homecare kit monitors temperature, ECG, pulse, blood oxygen, blood pressure and detect falls. It is marketed for the UAE and Middle East markets.
Understanding immune peptides
Scientists at Israel’s Technion Institute have uncovered the atomic structure of Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) in the immune system. It could lead to the design of similar artificial materials for technological and medical applications such as treating infections and even killing cancer cells.
A healthier future
The student projects exhibited at Israel’s Technion Faculty of Biomedical Engineering included systems for predicting epileptic seizures, mood tracking in cancer patients, and prevention of sudden death in athletes. First prize went to Lidan Fridman for her new technology to diagnose hearing loss accurately.
AI surgical platform for Tel Aviv hospital
Tel Aviv’s Ichilov (Sourasky) medical center is implementing the advanced AI surgical intelligence platform from US-Israel’s Theator (reported here previously). It extracts and annotates every key moment from a procedure to allow surgeons to review their work from every angle.
Treat sleep apnea and stop snoring
Israel’s KeepMed is currently conducting clinical trials of its KeePAP device to help patients with Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) open their airways and reduce snoring. The soft, lightweight, hose-less wearable is designed for comfort and to restore good-quality sleep.
Predicting an epileptic seizure
Ben Gurion University’s Dr Oren Shriki has founded the Israeli startup NeuroHelp to develop the Epiness – a wearable device that combines EEG-based monitoring of brain activity plus machine-learning algorithms to generate a one-hour warning of an upcoming seizure.
Odor linked to repeat miscarriages
Researchers at Israel’s Weizmann Institute have discovered that women who suffer repeated pregnancy loss (uRPL) process messages concerning male body odor in a different way than other women. Brain scans reveal they have smaller olfactory bulbs – the initial brain-relay for smell.
Preventing premature births
Some 1 million preterm babies die each year and many more suffer severe disabilities. Israeli startup PregnanTech has developed a silicone ring which can help prevent preterm births. A clinical trial for pregnant women at risk is planned at King’s College Hospital London.
Medics save mother and baby
36-year-old Liron was 39-weeks pregnant with her first child when she collapsed unconscious. Within seconds, three paramedics from Israel’s United Hatzalah arrived. With CPR and a defibrillator, they restored Liron’s heartbeat. Liron, husband Yaron and baby Lior are now a happy family.
ISRAEL IS INCLUSIVE AND GLOBAL
New wheels for Tal
Just one example of Israelis concern for the disadvantaged. Tal’s 30 years in a wheelchair were wearing down his upper limbs. Supporters of Israeli NGO ALEH bought him a modern electric wheelchair and he is already zipping around the halls of ALEH, his smile bigger than ever.
Award for a special soldier
Instead of accepting an exemption from the IDF because of his Asperger’s condition, Itai joined Special in Uniform. His “disability” helped him crack complex codes in a specialized top-secret IDF cyber unit, for which he has received a special award.
Israeli wins international AI prize
MIT Professor, Israel’s Regina Barzilay (reported here previously) has won the Squirrel AI Award for Artificial Intelligence to Benefit Humanity from the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence. It comes with an associated prize of $1 million.
Israel at the UN
Israel recently joined the Council of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) with Israel’s Yael Rubinstein immediately heading the FAO’s European group. Here also is a UN list of Israel’s contribution to the UN’s Sustainable Development program, especially with “less developed” countries.
Historic media webinar
Senior media professionals, journalists and academics from the UAE, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Sudan and Algeria took part in an unprecedented 2-hour online forum to discuss with Israeli journalists and senior government officials the role of the media in forging peace in the Middle East. See great I24 video.
Israel’s entrepreneurial universities
Four Israeli universities are listed in PitchBook’s 2020 ranking of 50 leading global undergraduate programs that produce the most entrepreneurs who go on to obtain venture funding. They are Tel Aviv Uni (8), Technion Institute (12), Hebrew U (32) and Ben Gurion (42).
Israeli delivers Iron Dome to US Army
Israel’s Ministry of Defense has delivered the first of two Iron Dome Defense System batteries to the U.S. Army. Defense Minister Benny Gantz said the system had saved many Israeli civilian lives and “I am proud that this advanced system will also protect U.S. Army troops.”
Agricultural help for Nepal
Israel and Nepal have just signed a cooperation agreement in which Israel will help Nepal develop its agricultural sector to overcome the food crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic. It includes an Israel-Nepal agricultural excellence center with advanced Israeli technologies specific for Nepal.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Filtering out Covid-19
Ben Gurion University’s new laser-induced graphene (LIG) air filter (reported here previously) is now being commercialized by Israeli startup company LIGC. The porous graphene acts like an electric fence that zaps any airborne bacteria or virus. It is more effective than UV-C and fiber HEPA filters.
Rapid Covid test for airports
Following successful trials, Israel’s Sheba hospital has formed a new startup Virusight Diagnostics with Israel’s Newsight to commercialize Newsight’s 1-second Covid-19 gargle test (see here). Now ICTS Europe is to install the SpectraLIT test into its Sentinel airport security kiosks.
IDF facemask protects healthcare workers
An advanced mask shielding against coronavirus, developed by the IDF, is now being tested at Israel’s Meir hospital in Kfar Saba. Healthcare workers who have used it say it makes a huge difference in how they perform their duties.
Microsoft showcases two Israeli security products
Microsoft’s 2020 Ignite (online) conference featured two cloud security products developed at the Development Center in Israel. The Azure Security Center Multi Cloud shows a unified picture of all security, whereas Microsoft Defender gives end-to-end protection against attacks.
An Israeli cyber academy in Bosnia
Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has entered into an agreement with the Bosnian Ministry of Education and Science to open a cyber academy in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Two of IAI’s subsidiary companies will provide remote online training on TAME Range – IAI’s cyber simulator and trainer.
Israeli apps to keep you sane
7 Israeli startups (all new to this newsletter) aim to help maintain mental health. TherapyEverywhere (therapy admin), Elios Health (therapy analytics), Kidamy (parenting advice), 7Chairs (support group), Infibond (mental assessment), Kai.ai (life coach) and GGTUDE (mental health platform).
Electric road for Tel Aviv
Israel’s ElectReon (reported here previously) has launched a pilot to build electric roads for public transportation charging in Tel Aviv. The first route from Tel Aviv University Rail station to Klatzkin terminal Ramat Aviv includes 600 meters of electric road to charge specially equipped electric buses.
Solar powered fabric
Israel’s Anai Green is one of 3 winners of the 2020 Women4Climate Tech Challenge for her Lumiweave fabric. With embedded photovoltaic cells, Lumiveave products provide shade during the day and light at night. Applications include parasols/umbrellas, canopies and shading enclosures.
Removing the gap between design and development
Israel’s Relate has built a bi-directional visual design platform that allows designers and developers to work more closely together. Relate has 8,000 users signed up to use the platform in the U.S and Europe and had a $125,000 grant from the Fusion LA accelerator program.
AT&T gets an Israeli networking upgrade
Israel’s DriveNets (reported here previously) reports that its Network Cloud platform will provide the software-based core routing solution for AT&T, one of the world’s biggest telecommunications companies.
ECONOMY & BUSINESS
Israeli tech on track to another record
Despite the global pandemic, Israeli tech companies have raised $7.6 billion in the nine months of 2020 and well on track to beat the previous record of $8.3 billion for the whole of 2019. Especially popular are Israeli tech companies that focus on healthcare, cybersecurity and remote working.
New UAE & Chinese partners for Mobileye
Chinese automaker Geely will be installing SuperVision ADAS from Israel-based Mobileye in Lynk & Co’s Zero Concept electric vehicle. Mobileye will also shortly begin testing autonomous vehicles in Dubai and aims to roll out full Mobility-as-a-Service by 2023.
Israeli tech can lower car insurance premiums
Israeli insurance software company Sapiens is offering its insurance clients the driving behavior app from Israel’s GreenRoad Driving Technologies. It will allow the insurers to assess the risks of potential customers and offer personalized policies with appropriate premiums.
Security with Salt
Israeli cyber security startup Salt Security protects a company from cyber-attack through its many interfaces with external systems. Salt Security has sealed strategic partnerships deals with French multinational retail corporation Carrefour and Nasdaq-traded data centers giant Equinix.
Providing storage solutions for Intel
Intel Corp is partnering Israel-based Lightbits Labs. Lightbits’ product LightOS system will be optimized for Intel hardware and provide customers with improved storage efficiency for their data centers without compromising performance.
Cisco acquires Israeli cybersecurity startup
Cisco has acquired Israel’s Portshift for $100 million, to “move towards delivery of security for all phases of the application development lifecycle. The Portshift team is building capabilities that span a large portion of the lifecycle of the cloud-native application.” Cisco wrote.
Israeli cybersecurity companies consolidate
Israeli-founded cybersecurity giant Imperva is acquiring Israeli-founded US database security company jSonar. jSonar’s analytics and Security Operations, Automation and Response (SOAR) platform will be incorporated throughout Imperva’s systems.
Overtaking on the inside
Israeli car fleet management startup Fleetonomy (reported here previously) has been taken over by fellow Israeli company Via Transportation. Fleetonomy should comfortably fit into Via’s mission statement to build “the transportation systems of tomorrow, right now.”
Investment in Israeli startups
Next Insurance raised $250 million; Infarm raised $170 million; BioCatch raised $168 million; Papaya Global raised $40 million; Axis Security raised $32 million; Coralogix raised $25 million; Medasense raised $18 million; KeepMed raised $15.2 million; Strigo raised $8 million;
CULTURE, ENTERTAINMENT & SPORT`
Innovative Lod visitor center
The “Aderaba Lod” Center for Ancient-Contemporary Innovation is a new educational-tourist visitor center, being built in Lod, Israel. It will present one of the most exciting chapters in the history of the Jewish people – the era of the “Tannaim,” the sages of the Mishna who lived 10 – 220 CE.
130,000 historical postcards
Britain’s David Pearlman has donated his collection of 130,000 postcards of pre-State Israel to the Hebrew University. They display the religious, political, architectural and social aspects of the land from the 19th to 21st century. Some have described them as “tweets from the past”.
Israeli singer Elkana Martziano, winner of Israel’s “The Voice” has teamed up with UAE’s popular singer Walid Aljassim to record a duet aptly titled “Hello, friend”. Appropriately it’s a very authentic Middle-Eastern / Mizrahi mix. Not sure about the snake, though!
UAE soccer team signs Israeli-Arab
Israel’s national soccer team midfielder Dia Saba is joining the Al-Nasr SC soccer team in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates on a three-year, $3 million per season contract. He will be the first Israeli to play on a team in an Arabian Gulf state.
THE JEWISH STATE
Arabs archaeologists relocate ancient mikveh
A 2000-year-old mikveh (ritual bath) found in the Galilee (reported here previously) has been successfully excavated and transported to the religious Kibbutz Hanaton. The directors of the excavation were Abed Ibrahim and Dr. Walid Atrash of the Israel Antiquities Authority:
Ancient measurement is handed down
Israeli archaeologists believe they have discovered the precise dimensions of ancient biblical measure the ‘tefach’. 370 storage jars from the 7th to 9th century BCE have been scanned and found to have almost identical sized inner rims – 8.9 cm – the average size of a man’s hand today.
60 Olim from Argentina
60 new immigrants from Argentina arrived in Israel in time for Sukkot and despite the pandemic. They sent many elated messages from the plane including “The truth is, there was almost no need for a pilot or navigator on this flight, we just flew from the intensity of excitement, enthusiasm and joy.”
Shabbat Shalom from the UAE
An extremely positive Shabbat and New Year message from Shamma Sohail AlMazrui, minister of state for youth affairs in the United Arab Emirates.
IDF receives hundreds of sukkahs
The Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF) has delivered 225 brand-new sukkahs to bases throughout Israel. They will allow soldiers to eat and pray outdoors in a safe space due to coronavirus restrictions.
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